September ’09 releases for Infinity
by Grant Hill
At the end of September, several new miniatures for Infinity were released. For the purposes of this review, Corvus Belli provided us with:
- PanOceania Fusilier with Combi Rifle + Light GL
- Haqqislam Odalisque with Spitfire
- Combined Army Rasyat with Spitfire
- Yu Jing Japanese Sectorial Army starter pack
Fusilier with Combi Rifle + Light GL Price: €7.50
Fusiliers are the more basic light infantry of the PanOceania army. This particular example is an interesting addition to the range as he is equipped with a light grenade launcher attachment on the combi rifle, which allows for parabolic speculative fire in the Infinity rules. The kit is provided in three parts: the body, right arm holding the gun, and the left arm. As the left hand is attached to the gun (ball and socket joint at the wrist) there is little choice in posing the figure without serious conversion work. Both arms connect at the shoulders with the ball and socket within a ball and socket type joint that Corvus Belli have started to adopt over the last year for their Infinity range. Again, this eases assembly but limits the pose. The arms join in the infamous “gun cradle” that can be tricky to assemble, fortunately the sockets meant it was actually pretty easy in this case, but there was a small gap to fill on one shoulder.
While easy to remove, there was a noticeable mould line running over the centre of the figure. It was mainly limited to flat or rounded surfaces and did not obscure any detail. The barrel of the combi rifle was slightly filled in, presumably from casting, requiring me to reach for a small drill.The pose on the figure is as though the figure is running and firing in a perpendicular direction. Infinity is famous for its dynamic poses and this is one of the more extreme examples, thus sure to divide opinion. Personally I’m a fan as it really feels like it’s capturing the action. The high level of detail expected from the range is present, with some standouts being the boot tread (see image), knife and equipment pouches.
- Dynamic pose capturing the action.
- Great detail.
- That dynamic pose may be too much for some.
Odalisque with Spitfire Price: €7.50
Odalisques are security professionals and VIP escorts within the Haqqislam faction, they are supposedly very intelligent as well as beautiful. The spitfire she is armed with is a powerful, high rate of fire weapon. The figure is comprised of only two pieces: the body and a left arm holding a knife. The arm attaches at the shoulder using a small peg the fits into a recess in the shoulder, meaning assembly is very easy. Unfortunately the left arm and knife had a lot of flash around them. This was easy to remove with a file but did slow things down a little.
The pose has this Odalisque crouched down in such a way that I’m not entirely sure what she’s supposed to be doing – it doesn’t really fit with the battlefield in motion type posing of a lot of the other Infinity miniatures. The figure is pretty tall, measuring 25 mm to the top of the head, and given the length of her thigh I’d guess that she’d be close to 35 mm tall if standing upright. I like the design of the spitfire and the figures dress has lots of detail to attract the brush of good painters, I also like her pigtails and think the figure captures the design brief well; a beautiful, almost courtesan-like woman, that is also deadly on the battlefield.
- Expresses the background material well.
- Pose seems out of place with other figures in the range.
- Excessive flash around the left arm.
Rasyat with Spitfire Price: €10.00
As some sort of alien joke, this elite deep incursion troop is known as the Rasyat Diplomatic Division. Being equipped with the high rate of fire spitfire means this figure offers different tactical opportunities to the previously released Rasyat with combi rifle. The miniature is provided in five parts: body, right arm with knife, left arm with spitfire, jetpack, and ammo feed. The main body part had a lot of excess metal/flash to be removed, and, as a warning, I accidentally broke the tab off the foot while trying to trim it down to fit into its base. The joints are almost all regular ball and socket types, but the surrounding armour plates mean that there is little room for rotation. I found it difficult to figure exactly where the “hopper” for the ammo feed joined to the shoulder, so I advise some dry fitting to figure it out. Predictably, I also managed to snap the ammo feed when trying to bend it into the correct shape, fortunately it’s thick enough that I could easily rejoin it.
In my opinion the finished miniature is worth the effort of the cleaning/assembly. However, the angle at which the spitfire points down to the ground suggests that the pose is more of the Rasyat in flight – perhaps some of the more skilled modellers would try to make some sort of flying base for this one. I like that the spitfire is a more alien design than the same weapon wielded by the Odalisque and the overall design of the figure pushes all the right buttons with me; the angle the knife is held at, the design of the body armour, and the fact that it’s a powerful space monkey with a jetpack.
- All around great design.
- Excessive flash and some assembly difficulties.
Yu Jing Japanese Sectorial Army starter pack Price: €32.50
This release is the first Infinity starter pack specifically targeting the sectorial army lists that are to be included in the forthcoming Human Sphere expansion book. While the packaging is familiar, with a corrugated card inner box surrounded by a full colour printed outer box, the outer box has been printed on a much glossier stock. While the change is small, the shiny nature of the packaging does catch the eye better than previous Infinity starter boxes. This box contains three Keisotsu Butai, a Kempeitai with boarding shotgun, Oniwaban, and a Domaru Butai with chain rifle. All of these figures are available separately, but the starter pack is cheaper by around the cost of one figure.
The Keisotsu Butai are cheap grunt soldiers and this is reflected in them being single piece castings. I appreciate single piece figures for grunts as it means I can generally get them on the table quickly, without spending a lot time assembling. In this case it has come at the expense of each of the three figures having a mould line on their face, and this has to be carefully removed. The sculptor has done a good job getting the figures to look Japanese (at least in my opinion) and I like the communicators around the ear and cast on facial hair for the two men. The troops are wearing body armour around the torso with “parachute”-style pants/trousers. This style of leg-wear is a theme within the box that ties the miniatures together and one that also fits the anime aesthetic of Infinity well, I do suspect they will divide opinion however, and I personally think they’re a bit silly for fighting in.
The Kempeitai are spies/agents within the Yu Jing army, and are loyal fanatics of the Japanese Emperor (in the Infinity background the Chinese are somewhat dominant over the Japanese within the Yu Jing faction). The figure is provided in two parts: body and left arm holding a Japanese sword. The left arm joins at the shoulder with a small nub and socket, while there is another nub on the sword that fits into a small recess on the figure’s body. I couldn’t get this part to line up correctly so even though the nubs are in their sockets, there is a bit of a gap at the shoulder that I will need to fill. The figure is pretty tall at about 33 mm and certainly seems like he has long legs. For an Infinity miniature, there isn’t a whole lot of small details, meaning it should be pretty easy to paint (although there are quite a few different panels on the coat). The pose doesn’t have a whole lot of action about it, which contrasts with the rest of the starter, but I do like the way the left hand is holding the sword.
The Domaru Butai are contemporary samurai in the Infinity universe, and this is reflected in this figure by the samurai-inspired helmet and the twin swords. The figure is provided in four pieces: body, swords, left arm with chain rifle and right arm. The arms attach at the shoulders and form a gun cradle type of pose. The casting around the join area on both arms wasn’t particularly good and this meant that it was hard to figure out where the arms should go. This, and the pose, made assembly frustrating and I ended up with super glue on my fingers. The ball in socket with inset ball in socket that appears on some Infinity figures would have been very welcome here. The two swords are cast together and have a small nub that fits into a recess on the figure’s waist. I decided to pin this join as I had a feeling it wouldn’t last long. Once assembled the figure is another example of what the Infinity line does best; fully armoured heavy infantry. I’d go so far as to say that no one is currently designing armour better than this. In addition to the intricate armoured panels making up the suit, there are visible braided areas that make the armour look practical for movement. In addition to raising my blood pressure, I do note that the gun cradle pose will make some areas of the figure difficult to paint.
The Oniwaban is an elite ninja, meaning infiltration and thermo optic camouflage in game terms (and a whole lot of close combat effectiveness). The figure is provided in four pieces: body, right arm holding sword, left arm, and a scabbard. The scabbard attaches to the body with a small nub and I decided I should pin this joint. Some people may want to leave it off as even with the pinned join I don’t think it’ll last long in a carry case or on the table. Getting the arms into the right places is a bit “fiddly” so dry-fitting and patience were key for me. I really like the design of the figure (I bought one of these for myself on their original release), it really brings to life what I think a futuristic ninja should look like. Tabi style boots are included in a design that blends the classic ninja look with lightweight body armour, grenades and a sidearm. Again the baggy trousers are going to divide opinion, but for me this is another standout figure from the Infinity line.
This starter pack represents a good opportunity to access one of the new sectorial armies at a (relatively) low price. Although rules/stats for using these figures are already available, it will be interesting to see what changes/new rules they can take advantage of when the Human Sphere expansion is released.
- Domaru Butai and Oniwaban are great designs.
- Easy access to a sectorial faction at a price saving.
- Some construction difficulties.
- Baggy trousers are likely to divide opinion.